conscious fly fisher

conscious fly fisher

t.z. | Friday, 1 July 2016

The conscious FlyFisher - So you caught a fish? What is next? What do you want to do with it? OK, I know - I am opening a can of worms here … but I wanted to share a few points of view on various matters. Water, fish, food .. you know all those things which matter to all of us.


Fly Tying is making lures to hunt fish. I think every FlyFisher should tie his own. That is why I keep showing flies which are simple and effective. With a little practice 99% of you folks can tie them. (Paul is a 1%ter) 

Making the right flies and the right decision when choosing a fly of fishing requires a deeper understanding of the nature around you and your fishing spots. In the case of a «trout hunter» this is predominantly insects. Water invertebrates are food for fish … and … here comes my main point - also indicators for water quality. Biologists search the water for them and categorize the water quality based on these «biological indicators» 

So a conscious flyfisher should therefore than be able to tell something about the water quality. Water is one of the most valuable resources on our planet. Water is life.

Wild trout were a food resource. They still are, but too much lesser degree. Industry food has taken over. I´d say 95% we eat nowadays is farmed. Farms are not whet they used to be. Meat production has become an industry undertaking of enormous size. Farmed animals - cows, pigs, chicken and salmon for example are held in large numbers in very tight spaces. Thi unnatural habitat leads to deseases and must be heavily medicated. On top the breeds are specificly gained towards meat production. A "meat" chicken" simply does not survive more thna a few month. As an adult it dies of genetically caused obisety.. 

I can´t eat this stuff. My body simply does not want to have it - my tastebuds give me very definite warnings. My body forced me to become pretty much a vegan. 

It all relates to taste. It is safe to conclude that the tastebuds in your mouth are there to protect you from poisonous items and rotten / bad food. This sense is so fine-tuned, it´s unbelievable. However, the industry food has fucked up this otherwise so fine-tuned sensors. So I think it s important to gain back the "sensors". One way is to catch and eat a wild fish once in a while. 

For my fishing this means that I have to choose the fishing destinations carefully. Ideally a waterway not heavily fished with good stock of wild fish, so taking out a small amount does not hurt the system. No worries, I do not kill the big ones. They go back for two reasons. Reproduction and keeping the gene pool heathy is one, having them as predators feeding on fry and other small fish is the other.

I can understand the desire to catch as many fish as possible, even though they are all returned, but that is not for me. Being by the water and actively observing what is going on is equally enjoyable for me as the very casting a fly and catching a fish. 

 «One should be able to fish without a rod.» I keep telling myself and my friends fishing with me. It opens the eyes - and is more relaxing than trying to get as many fish as possible. But that´s me. I am, very officially, an old, grumpy fart.

So back to C&R … releasing a fish for me is a part of «taking care» of the water. Selecting what is taken and what is set back to reproduce and being a predator. 

So when releasing a fish, I try to make sure it is done as quick as possible. I strive towards handling the fish longer than necessary (a few seconds just to take the barbless hook out) and keep him on the water. 

Personally, I have the feeling that there is enough pictures of fish held up in the air under a cap on the internet. Does one need to join this game? Doesn´t one look the same as everybody else? I think this is not something special any more. Cherish the moment for yourself or tie a waterproof video camera to you knee. (chill - I had mentioned that I`m an grumpy old fart) 

Releasing 1,2 and 3 ... thanks to Hein van Aar, Kvennan Flyfishing for the pictures. 
Kvennan is a good sportsfishing destination for those who are into C&R. The high fishing pressure af 5000 fishing licenses per season prevents using these waters as a food ressource. I visited Hein and Bernd Ziesche there two weeks ago. I had bit of fishing. No fish taken there.

So next weekend I fish again in one of the less, if at all frequented spots which are distributed all over Scandinavia.


picture by Al Pyke 

Thomas Züllich, or - “t.z.” as most call him - is a German flyfisher & flytier living in Norway. His flydressing is based on old traditions as well as very modern and innovative methods of creating flies. You can book Thomas for guided trips, flytying classes and presentations. He regularly gives speeches and demonstrations at fly fishing fairs. Thomas is member of the ProTeam at Partridge of Redditch as well as Regal Vises.

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